MES Ambassador Will Golding
Hello, my name is Will Golding. I am a cis gendered white male of Northern European descent, second year Master of Environment Studies (MES) student. I am from Palos Park, IL; a small community surrounded by forest preserves along the urban/rural divide of the southwest Chicagoland area. My academic background consists of two years studying architectural engineering at the University of Texas at Austin, two years of interdisciplinary sustainability studies at The Evergreen State College receiving a Bachelor of Liberal Arts. I have also completed two years of service as an AmeriCorps member with Tacoma/Pierce County Habitat for Humanity, building affordable houses with low-income families as a Construction Site Coordinator. I decided to participate in MES because I saw it as a great opportunity to combine my academic background and passion for justice driven community development to cultivate the skills I needed to become a leading interdisciplinary environmental justice advocate.
My aspirations in the MES program and future after graduate school are to effectively address the driving forces of climate change by promoting a justice driven sustainability paradigm shift by decolonizing socially constructed, destructive institutions. I am convinced that collaboratively exercising interdisciplinary understandings can guide these institutions to a healthier future for all our planet. I want to work on implementing sustainable, ecologically-beneficial infrastructure that helps communities adjust to climatically uncertain futures through innovative leadership approaches. I want to engage in bringing about greater collaboration between Native Nations and municipal, state, and federal governing entities through decolonization to develop place-based solutions for sustainable and just community development. I look forward to completing thesis research around the importance of Indigenous Ecological Knowledge to promote environmental justice while creating sustainable community-centric development.
Having attended Evergreen for my undergraduate education, I have enjoyed the similar interdisciplinary, team-taught program structures utilizes MES like Socratic seminars, group research proposals, and significant academic freedom. Numerous scholarship opportunities throughout MES have made my graduate education experience extremely affordable. To date, I have taken electives on ecological economics, sustainable forestry in fire prone landscapes, international energy policies, and strategic environmental advocacy. I have worked as research assistant with fellow Evergreen alumni Rhys Roth (’90), Director of Evergreen’s Center for Sustainable Infrastructure. MES has allowed me to have lunch with Washington State’s Supreme Court Justices, meet authors doing critical work on environmental ethnography, as well as numerous other opportunities to expand on my education outside of the classroom.